Economics is occasionally derided as a phony science. Frankly I struggled with it school and university so to me this description really resonates. How can the graphs and formulae in the textbooks ever really capture the behavior of complex organizations and impulsive consumers?
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FTSE 100 companies and the Public Sector are failing to take advantage of the transformative potential of the Internet economy, which now represents over 8% of UK GDP.
“Flatlining”, “pre-recovery”, “stagnant”, “sluggish” - we’re running out of adjectives to describe the UK’s seemingly moribund economy. Stripped of its AAA rating last weekend, it shrank by 0.3% in the final quarter of last year , and - amid signs of a possible triple dip recession - more of the same is predicted for 2013.
The Eurozone economy, meanwhile, is a horror show in slow-motion. After a contraction of 0.6% last year, the European Commission predicts that the 17 nation region collectively will shrink by 0.3% this year. And there will be no return to growth until 2014.
IT’S been described as “the $4.2 trillion (£2.7 trillion) opportunity”. According to the Boston Consulting Group, there will be 3bn internet users globally by 2016. If it were a nation, the internet-based economy would rank in the world’s top five. And the UK sits at the forefront, with 8.3 per cent of GDP now online – the highest proportion in the G20.
This month Gianni is retiring. We have been working together for almost 10 years. Gianni is a top level immunologist, with several claims to fame in his career: former head of biology at Human Genome Science and, before that, head of the cytokine and monoclonal antibody groups at Roche, where he also headed the interferon gamma group. He brought to the clinic the first ever drug from genomics research (MPF1). Finally, he's a relentless tailor of so many academic collaborations and he was responsible for extramural research at Merck Serono, his last corporate job. Then, for the last 10 years Gianni has been active in venture capital, having joined our Geneva office, as in house scientific advisor.
The ‘campaign’ to kickstart the London tech IPO market has kicked off. The blog posts that Neil Rimer and I both published have attracted a lot of press attention. The engagement we’ve had with No10 and the LSE should result in some small but important regulatory changes that should be seen as important steps towards making London a major hub for tech IPOs.
Here at Index, our conference rooms often play host to ardent debates. Robust discourse over where we should invest is an ingrained part of our culture. But when it comes to the fundamental issues that allow us to act on our mission of promoting the entrepreneurial ecosystem, we are generally in violent agreement. Over the last few months, we have mobilised around one major issue: to open the London IPO market and allow homegrown companies to realize their full potential.
Together we can get the Tech IPO market going in London
From our vantage point at Index, the centrality of the Tech sector to economic growth -- particularly during the economic slowdown of the last few years -- is all too clear.
A recent piece in the FT reiterated this point. Ed Hammond, the paper's property correspondent reviewed the shifting make-up of the City and the steady transformation of the tenant mix in the Square Mile.
Today we’re delighted to announce our new €350m early stage technology fund. It’s the final piece of €1bn of new capital we’ve raised in the last 12 months to complement the international platform we have been building to invest in both early stage and growth technology as well as life sciences companies.
I had a professor in college who explained financial markets by saying the that world was full of those looking to receive and those looking to provide certain cash flows with very specific parameters, such as timing, size, yield, currency, etc. The role of the financial markets and their facilitators, he said, is simply to match these cash flows.
We are very excited to announce that Sophia and the Nasty Gal team have agreed to partner with Index to build the next stage of what is already an incredibly successful startup.
For those of you who don't know about Nasty Gal, it is one of the fastest growing fashion etailers out there. Nasty Gal is great illustration of what happens when you marry ambition and vision with the need to be scrappy and resourceful to build your business.